A judge on Monday set bail at $40,000 for Diamond Reynolds, who live-streamed her boyfriend Philando Castile’s fatal encounter with police last year and who is now charged in an unrelated assault case.
“I do have public safety concerns,” Ramsey County District Judge Thomas Gilligan Jr. said before he announced his bail decision, calling the charges “very serious allegations.”
Reynolds, 27, of West St. Paul, is charged with second- and third-degree assault, accused of taking part in a hammer attack on a woman last week.
She was charged and appeared in Ramsey County District Court, but the case is being handled by the Washington County attorney’s office to avoid any conflict of interest with Ramsey County’s criminal case against the St. Anthony police officer, Jeronimo Yanez, who killed Castile during a traffic stop.
Gilligan also offered Reynolds a second option of $20,000 bail with conditions that she have no contact with the victim or the two other women who allegedly helped her in the assault.
Before Gilligan’s decision, Reynolds’ attorney, Karlowba Adams Powell, argued that she be released with no bail on her own recognizance or in the care of her mother.
Adams Powell said that Reynolds’ 5-year-old daughter was undergoing “significant” therapy after witnessing Castile’s shooting on July 6, and that Reynolds had to attend the sessions because her daughter is a minor.
In addition, Reynolds has no felony convictions and no history of violent crimes, the lawyer argued.
According to the complaint: Reynolds and Chnika Blair, 18, confronted the victim on Feb. 28 in a parking lot in the 1500 block of Jessamine Lane. The two women “jumped” the victim, with Reynolds allegedly wielding a hammer.
Dyamond Richardson, 25, pulled up in another vehicle and allegedly sprayed the victim with “bear mace.”
Richardson was apparently upset with the victim’s friend, who allegedly picked a fight with Richardson last month. Reynolds alleged that the same friend had damaged Reynolds’ vehicle, the charges said.
Blair and Richardson are also charged in the case.
Assistant Washington County Attorney Siv Yurichuk asked Monday for $40,000 bail with no conditions for Reynolds, or, $25,000 bail with conditions that Reynolds have no contact with the victim, Blair or Richardson.
Yurichuk argued that the planning that went into the attack and its nature presented a public safety concern.
“She’s innocent until proven guilty,” Adams Powell argued in response. “Her record speaks for itself.”
Adams Powell said that Reynolds would not be a flight risk if released. She asked that the judge consider no more than $500 for bail.
Gilligan acknowledged that Reynolds has no history of violent crime, but noted that the nature of the allegations hurt her bail evaluation.
Reynolds’ mother and several supporters left court Monday with no comment.
“We’re gonna work on it,” Adams Powell said of bailing Reynolds out of jail.
Adams Powell said that Reynolds will eventually plead not guilty. She is due back in court on April 3.